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Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Banksy's Jungle Book-inspired art sells for £78,000

Save or Delete by Banksy

An original art work by the legendary street artist Banksy, created for a Greenpeace Save or Delete campaign photographic poster, sold for £78,000 last night at Bonhams, New Bond Street, as part of its Urban Art sale. The unique piece, which was given to the vendor by the artist himself, was among a host of Banksy’s that fetched top prices in the sale.

It was originally commissioned by Greenpeace to highlight the problems of global deforestation as part of their Save or Delete campaign and features some of the main characters from Disney’s The Jungle Book transposed onto a picture of a devastated forest. Intended for use on posters, billboards and postcards, it was printed, but never put into circulation because of the protectionist policies at Disney.

It is believed that the vendor of this lot is donating a percentage of the proceeds to Greenpeace.

Other Banksy highlights in the sale included Portrait of an Artist, circa 1998, believed to be the first work that he created for sale, which sold for £60,000; Everytime I Make Love To You I Think Of Someone Else, 2003 (left), which made £42,000; Balloon Girl, 2004, which fetched £12,600; and Rude Copper, 2002, which sold for £9,600.

The sale saw an enormous turn-out and competitive bidding (both on the phone and in the room) following Bonhams’ two-year break from holding Urban Art auctions.

Other works to achieve excellent prices included a performance piece created by American graffiti artist, Futura 2000, for punk rock band The Clash’s Combat Rock tour, which sold for £38,400 (it was estimated it might sell for between £15,000 – 20,000); French artist JR’s Street Kid, Favela Morro da Providencia, Rio de Janeiro, Brasil, 2008, which made £31,200 (estimate £15,000 – 20,000); and the catalogue’s cover lot, Shepard Fairey’s Peace Goddess on Wood, 2008, right, which fetched £27,600 (estimate £8,000 – 12,000).

• Auction catalogue online at: www.bonhams.com/urbanart

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